A party rushes down to the cave, unlocks the door, and finds Injun Joe starved to death inside. He evidently has eaten the few bats he could catch, used every candle stump he could find, and made a cup out of rock and placed it under a dripping stalactite to catch a spoonful of water a day. “Injun Joe’s Cup,” Twain informs us, has since become one of the chief tourist attractions in the cave.
The morning after Injun Joe’s funeral, Tom tells Huck his theory that the gold never was in Room No. 2 at the Temperance Tavern. Instead, he believes that it remains hidden in the cave. That afternoon, the boys take a raft down to the place where Tom and Becky exited the cave and crawl inside. Tom comments on how much he wants to start a gang of robbers and use this part of the cave as a hideout. The boys discuss how grand it would be to be robbers and eventually reach the place where Tom encountered Injun Joe.
Tom points out a cross that is burned on the wall of the cave and tells Huck that this, not the tavern, must be where the gold is hidden. Huck becomes frightened that Injun Joe’s ghost could be lurking around, but Tom points out that the cross would keep him away. Comforted by Tom’s words, Huck helps him search the area. The boys find nothing and decide to dig under the rock. There they find a collection of guns, moccasins, a belt, and the treasure.
The boys decide to leave the guns behind, reasoning that they will be useful for their band of robbers in the future. They drag the gold out of the cavern and put it on their raft back to St. Petersburg. On their way to hide the treasure, however, they encounter the Welshman, who insists that they accompany him to a party at the Widow Douglas’s house. He sees the box they are lugging but assumes they have been collecting old iron.
Nearly every person of importance in the village has gathered at the Widow Douglas’s house. While the boys change into nice clothes, Huck tells Tom that he wants to escape out the window because he cannot stand such a large crowd. Tom tells him not to worry. Sid comes in and informs them that the party is being given in honor of the Welshman, Mr. Jones, and his sons, and that Mr. Jones plans to surprise everyone by announcing that Huck was the real hero. Sid then says, in a self-satisfied way, that the surprise will fall flat because he has already spoiled it. Tom yells at Sid for being such a nasty sneak and chases him out of the room.
At the supper table, Mr. Jones tells his secret and everyone pretends to be surprised. Widow Douglas then announces that she plans to give Huck a home and educate him. Tom bursts out, “Huck don’t need it. Huck’s rich.” Everyone chuckles at the joke, and Tom runs outside and brings in the gold. Everyone is shocked. When the money is counted, it adds up to over twelve thousand dollars.